July 20, 2017 – Every year on November 11 you can see them: red poppies, laid down as flowers or worn on the lapel as an ornament. In Great Britain, Canada, and the US the “Remembrance Poppies” commemorate the fallen soldiers of the two world wars.
For CIT it is an honour to design a numismatic rendition of this tradition for the Cook Islands. Made with smartminting© technology from 1 oz fine silver, the 45 mm large commemorative coin looks like a stylized red poppy. The creation is not only beautifully shaped but also brilliantly coloured.
Cook Islands / 5 Dollars / Silver .999 / 1 oz / 45 mm / Mintage: 2500.
The obverse depicts the Ian Rank-Broadley portrait of Elizabeth II as well as her name, the name of the issuing nation and the nominal value. Also the inscription LEST WE FORGET.
The reverse takes the shape of a stylized red poppy flower.
Wooden crosses with artificial poppies. Photo: Amanda Slater / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 2.0
The Remembrance Poppy as a symbol of the fallen soldiers goes back to John McCrae’s poem “In Flanders Fields”. He composed it on May 3, 1915, deeply moved by the sight of the red poppies by the grave of his comrade Alexis Helmer, who had died the previous day from a shell splinter.
It is thanks to Moina Belle Michael (1869-1944) that, today, the flowers are omnipresent in the English-speaking world on Remembrance Day. From 1918 onwards the American teacher tried to convince the government, veteran organizations, and the public to make the poppy the official symbol of remembrance. Taken from a Rudyard Kipling poem from 1897, in which he reverted to a biblical quotation, the line LEST WE FORGET urges to keep alive the remembrance of the dead.
The coins were minted by B. H. Mayer’s Kunstprägeanstalt GmbH. Collectors can purchase the issues through specialty dealers.
Please find more information on these coins here.
This is the website of Coin Invest Trust.
Historical background information is provided on the website of the Belgian museum In Flanders Fields.
And to read the poem “In Flanders Fields”, please click here.